The Last Smile - Resistance Reflections
Still trying to unfuck the world
The last photo taken of me before the election of November 8, 2016 was in Laguna Beach. I was reporting feverishly on the documented corruption of candidate Donald Trump - a veteran fraudster.
I had just dashed off my latest post - ‘Ever Feel Like You’ve Been Cheated’ - in which I endured reading the Jane Doe complaint, which detailed teen rape allegations against Trump and convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein - who Trump said “likes beautiful women as much as I do, and many of them are on the younger side. No doubt about it…”
You might recall, Epstein was convicted in 2008 of soliciting an underage girl for prostitution and had been accused of having sex with more than 30 underage girls.
I had spent years reporting on human trafficking, and the Jane Doe complaint was among the most vile I had ever read. I was fuming that morning at the way media was alternately ignoring rape charges of a self-admitted sexual offender and minimizing them. Jane Doe later dropped the charges after receiving death threats, but there were 15 other women who came forward and accused Trump of sexual assault. What about them?
So in the room by the sea where I was writing on that morning, I felt a visceral punch in the gut when I saw a news clip of a CEO who I was personally acquainted with telling America on a national news program that he didn’t involve himself with “tabloid fodder” and praising Trump as an “alpha male.”
Full disclosure, I am still throwing up a little in my mouth as I type those words.
I reached out to the CEO and told him if he simps for Trump, he is doomed. He did not realize I was his only true friend in the media. He ignored me, then blocked me, and as I predicted, he has been quite doomed ever since after publicly supporting Trump. ETTD.
This was many years before I became a Jason Stanley groupie and learned that big business backs fascism. The good news is, we don’t need to back the businesses that back the fascists. We have that power.
We should flex it more often.
I fear in coming months we will need to use our collective economic power to upend the targeted attempts at taking away human rights. The effort is national and relentless, and we must defend everyone in our country - we cannot make any exceptions.
With ‘Day Old McDonald’ Trump desperately speaking Victimese on every Kremlin-propaganda platform that will have him, I came up with a new theme song for him - ‘Gimmie Gimmie Gimmie’ (with apologies to my friend Greg Ginn and Black Flag). Lyrically, it’s just so perfect. Men like Trump and Putin are trying to stay out of prison for a lifetime of corruption, and that takes resources, so that’s part of why they steal other people’s shit.
So I came across this photo of my last smile before the election. It was right after I pressed send on the ‘Cheated’ post, and I went outside to walk on the sand and take in the beauty of SoCal beaches.
I was so happy in that moment.
We were just days away from our first female president - the most qualified candidate of modern times - and the difference her election was going to make for all our daughters was remarkable. Anything would then be possible in America. The dream rebirthed.
In that moment, I had faith in my country and its citizens. Our imperfect democracy would withstand an assault from the authoritarian right and tankie left, and we would begin the healing from a vitriolic campaign cycle.
My children would have a record of how hard their mother fought for her presidency - both in the trenches phone banking and on my laptop.
And then, America elected a Russian asset - aided by an ongoing foreign attack and Fifth Column traitors.
It would be a long time before I smiled again.
Like millions throughout America, I felt the weight of the world settle on my shoulders.
It’s still there.
But as long as I’m taking action, and I got you and allies, I push on.
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Save the date! The next Bette Dangerous ‘Speakeasy’ Zoom for paid members is Sunday, March 26, 4 pm PT. Each ‘Speakeasy’ features special guests, and if you are not yet a paid member, please consider subscribing to join the community. Our featured guest this Sunday is retired IRS criminal investigator Martin Sheil, who will answer questions about Trump’s legal and financial entanglements. Looking forward to meeting new members and see Bette’s core group.🤍
(‘The Last Smile’ - November 3, 2016)